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2nd Impressions of H1


New Member
Hi everyone. I've been trying to research the HI system for some time now, but there seems to be very little reveiw/response from pros working in the field (all genres).

As a professional (portrait/fashion), I would really appreciate hearing/reading some comments from other pros who have bravely taken the plunge to the H1 and who have put it through it's paces on the job.

How is the camera holding up? how is the print quality for editorial/ad work? (if possible, would you compare to other pro MF cameras, specifically the Mamiya RZ and Contax 645, and/or other Hassies). Do the optics make you swoon, or are they lacking (compared to other MF cameras). How is the focusing? AF? in manual focus?

I am seriously considering changing systems, and would be grateful if other pros would step up and speak to some of these issues. There is not a lot of commentary on the camera (other than overview articles and company sales pitch) from the pro user's perspective and impressions past the first use.

What's the 2nd impression?

Hi again,

so, no one cares to talk about the H1 anymore?, or is it that there are no pros that actually use it????

The pros are working to hard, trying to pay for the silly thing, to find time to write testemonials on the H1.
But wait a month or to - some of the digi back producers are giving a H1 as a gift when you invest in the backs
thanks ruben. i dig. (but nice to know at least someone hears me....)

ok pros. glad to hear you might be busy working. at your convenience then...

brace yourself. here is another reply. i will speak on behalf of two of us who shoot everything from 35 to 8 x 10. once again hasselblad has outdone the competition. they have engineered a camera which excels in all areas. it uses fewer batteries per shot, it focuses faster than any other, it has lenses second to none, and costs more than any other. that being said ask yourself how often you are going to buy a new camera of this magnitude. we have been shooting with the hasselblads since 1975 and could not have been more satisfied even though the expense has been more than what we paid for the mammies. we have never had one job which has been ruined, stopped or held up because of camera failure - back, lens or firing. now with the digital backs it is scarry to think that we will have to rely on a second party for reliability. we have tried out the tele lens - forget it it is far to heavy a piece of glass for convenient use. but the wide angle -be prepared to fall in love with it if you use it. no fall off at the edges, no unusual distortions and when you use digital you are only using the center - best of the lens. i can honestly say that with all of the lenses and all the bodies we have used and with the thousands of rolls of film we have shot - the cameras have never disappointed us. maybe some photographers, maybe some subjects but never the cameras and their output. so if you have the money and you want to have an assurance of quality and reliability go ahead. i can say that you won't be sorry. you might even wait a little while and find one on e-bay. that is where my friend got his. but go for it.
Thanks for answering first, Richard. I've been wanting to respond but because the H1 is my first medium format camera, and I only work with Fuji Velvia film, I didn't feel quite qualified. My experience has been with Nikon 35mm. I find the H1 delivers incredibly high quality images. I don't know if the quality of my newest images taken with the Hl can be seen here, but I hope so:
I do have some concerns about the system: why hasn't Hasselblad provided an up-to-date instruction book in English which includes trouble-shooting problems? (for ex&le: occasionally when I turn the Hl on it will not function. I know the solution because occasionally Nikons experience the same malfunction. Disconnect the battery holder, then reconnect it. I gather some static electrical charge (most unprofessional explanation-sorry) accumulates and prevents proper functioning until dissipated.) When will new lenses be introduced-such as the long ago promised 120 macro? When will the adapter for other Hasselblad V-system lenses be released?
I am enamored of both the 35 and 150.
If your camera is new (I expect it is) I would have it serviced ASAP for that electrical mal-function while it is stil under warranty - It might be what you explain, but if not it could be an error in the chip, and replacing camera electronics especially from hasselblad could end up being very expensive if it is not under the warranty any longer. cheers ruben
ps lovely pictures on your web-page
Thanks, Ruben. After I use my Hl next month on my trip to Northern Europe I'll take your advice and have my camera serviced by Hasselblad.
Dear Richard, Robert, Ruben:

thanks a lot for the comments. I really appreciate it.

additionally, would you please give me some feedback on the issue of focus, specifically using manual focus. I have been really impressed in demos with the speed/accuracy of the AF, (and also with the bright viewfinder.), and will indeed use the AF at times. However, at least half of the time I would like to be using purely MF, and I wonder if there is any problem with using the lenses in a normal MF workflow? For ex&le, I have noticed that the focusing seems a little soft, imprecise, while turning the lens manually. (in a similar way that say Canon AF lenses feel when trying to adjust them manually, as opposed to a strictly MF lens)

In other words, would you still chose the camera/lenses using in a primarily MF mode/situation?

The Hl has large and very bright yellow symbols showing focus confirmation. 100% of my work is done on a tripod and 90% is done in manual focus. Using the 150 & 1.7 teleconverter the focusing in both AF and manual in my experience is dead-on accurate.